chapter  15
13 Pages

Information Technology and Urban Planning

ByP. Nijkamp

Cities and regions have never exhibited a static pattern, but have always been in a state of flux. In the past decade however, spatial dynamics has shown acceleration due to the impact of new technology. Rapid transit systems, microelectronics, telecommunications and energy-saving measures have had profound consequences for the spatial organisation of our world. Current spatial dynamics does not display one unambiguous spatial and urban pattern however. Though in many cases social and face-to-face contacts are still necessary, it is also evident that an avalanche of information and communication systems is emerging that will have a profound impact on spatial mobility patterns. Sometimes urban change processes may be determined by general technological factors (e.g. automation), but in other cases urban forms may be affected by specific urban technologies (e.g. underground rapid transit systems). Clearly, the resulting urban pattern is a multi faceted phenomenon, as it is simultaneously co-determined by industrial, residential, transportation, architectural, recreational and institutional factors.